SHOOTING HOLLYWOOD, by Melodie Johnson Howe

Shooting Hollywood
Melodie Johnson Howe was "one of the last of the starlets," according to Howe herself. She acted in the movies with Beau Bridges (in "Baily, Gaily"), Clint Eastwood (in "Coogan's Bluff") and Alan Alda (in "Moonshine War") among others in the late 60's. She always wanted to be a writer and went to the UCLA Extension at night to take writing courses in fiction. Her first novel was THE MOTHER SHADOW (Viking, 1989), featuring private eye Claire Conrad and her young assistant Maggie Hill, which was nominated for an Edgar in the first novel category.

At the Edgar Banquet, Marily Wallace asked Howe to writer a short story for SISTERS IN CRIME 4 (Berkley, 1991), and Howe contributed "Dirty Blonde" to the anthology. The story became the first one of the series featuring Diana Poole, blonde and sexy and widowed forty-something actress. SHOOTING HOLLYWOOD (Crippen & Landru, 2011) contains 9 short stories featuring Diana Poole as follows:

"Dirty Blonde," first published in SISTER IN CRIME 3, edited by Marilyn Wallace (Berkley, 1991)
"Another Tented Evening," first published in the March 1996 issue of Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine (EQMM)
"Killing the Sixties," first published in the June 1999 issue of EQMM
"Facing Up," first published in the July 2004 issue of EQMM
"Tiffany Blue," first published in the March 2002 issue of EQMM
"The Talking Dead," first published in the June 2003 issue of EQMM
"The Good Daughter," first published in the August 2007 issue of EQMM
"What's It Worth?," first published in the December 2008 issue of EQMM
"A Hollywood Ending," first published in the July 2009 issue of EQMM

She wrote the second Conrad/Hill novel, BEAUTY DIES, in 1994.

This collection comes in two editions: the hardcover edition ($43) limited to 175 copies, and signed and numbered by Howe; and the trade softcover edition ($17). Each limited hardcover copy contains a separately printed pamphlet, "Acting Tips," first published in MALICE DOMESTIC 10 (Avon, 2001), "edited" by Nevada Barr. Order from Crippen & Landru by e-mailing to info@crippenlandru.com, or by sending a letter to Crippen & Landru, Dept. G, P. O. Box 9315, Norfolk, Virginia 23505, USA. They honor Visa, MasterCard and Amex.


TO WHAT'S COOL last time?